Build a Chain Saw Electric Sharpener

Instead of manually sharpening your chain saw build this chain saw electric sharpener tool, includes step-by-step instructions and detailed diagram.

| November/December 1985

  • Chain saw sharpener
    The 12-volt sharpener can take to the field with the rest of your woodcutting tools because it's been designed to clamp to any convenient spot on your vehicle's bumper. The clip-on leads connect directly to each battery post.
  • 096-116-01-imgs_01a
    Diagram: Details for the electric chain saw sharpener tool.

  • Chain saw sharpener
  • 096-116-01-imgs_01a

If you're not too keen on manually sharpening your chain saw, build a chain saw electric sharpener tool and dress your chain saw for success. (See the chain saw sharpener diagram in the image gallery.)

While there are people who enjoy hand-filing their chain-saw chains, for most of us, keeping the cutters sharp can be a tedious, time-consuming, and often frustrating chore. And although such regular maintenance is a necessity, there's nothing that says you can't take steps to get it over with as quickly as possible!

Some can wield a mean freehand file, and others rely on jigs to keep the teeth set, but thanks to some workshop wizardry, MOTHER's staffers can now simply clamp the chain saw electric sharpener tool shown here to a truck bumper or a workbench and dress a saw chain clean as a whistle in a matter of minutes . . . and with a little bit of work, you can duplicate this time-saving tool!

It's built from dimensional steel stock and uses a 12-volt blower motor and commercially available abrasive wheels to do the dirty work. But it also has a couple of features that make it downright convenient to use. For one, the DC motor can be run directly off your vehicle's battery, so you can sharpen your saw right in the field. Second, once you've drilled two 5/16 inch holes in your chain bar, the saw can be clamped and sharpened without disassembly. Likewise, because the mount is designed to pivot, both the right-and left-hand cutters can be dressed without dismounting the tool. Finally, because the grinding wheel is set at a predetermined angle, the cutters are always filed at the correct pitch.

All the parts are dimensioned and described in the accompanying illustration, and they're commonly available as hardware or steel scrap items. The 12-volt motor (Part No. J-19991) was ordered at a cost of $11.50, including shipping, from Jerryco Inc., Evanston, IL, and the 1/8 inch abrasive wheel (Part No. 3700588) is available from the Foley-Belsaw Co., Kansas City, MO (other wheels are available to fit larger saws).

We won't walk you through the tool's assembly step-by-step, because the illustrations should provide all the instruction you'll need. But we will offer some suggestions that'll make things easier as you go along. To start, you'll need to cut a 1-5/8 inch strip of metal from one leg of the angle iron section that'll be used as the bar mount. This piece of scrap can later be employed to make the switch mount and the leveler tongue. Also, rather than welding the swivel stops to the base, simply cut 45 degree angles into the end of each one and drill slots in their centers; they can then be adjusted to suit the pitch of your chain's teeth and fastened with 3/16 inch machine bolts.

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